Marie serves spirits and sweets

It was a quiet Saturday night at McMenamins Pub and Brewery. Customers sat quietly and enjoyed their food and drinks as a dark-haired bartender, who stood barely above 5 foot, shuffled around the lobby.

She stops at a small two-person table that had half-empty glasses and plates topped with crumbs and half-eaten french fries.

Playing on the television above the table was a baseball game where the Cleveland Indians clinched a 5-4 victory over the Seattle Mariners.

Behind the bar, the bartender, named Jill Marie, stood on the tips of her toes, exposing the blue roses tattoo on her forearm, as she reached for two Pilsner glasses that were barely out of her reach.

Opposite of Marie, a man with short curly hair was finishing his Dungeon Burger, which consisted of grilled mushrooms, Swiss cheese and angus beef, pointed to the glasses and remarked, “someone should get you a stool for that.”

Marie smirked at the man, who introduced himself to her as Bobby Langford.

“I don’t need a stool, I can get along fine without it,” Marie said.

As Marie left, Langford turned to his friend and began guessing different aspects of Marie. How many more tattoos did she have on her body? How many years had she worked at the brewery? What is her marital status?

The gentlemen had an answer to their third question, as Marie was topping off the glasses of two customers at the other end of the bar.

“I haven’t met my future husband yet,” Marie said. “When I find him, he’s probably going to be younger than I am.”

Next to Langford and his friend were two more customers, who were gulping down their amber-colored brews. One of the customers, a portly man with white hair and a soup strainer moustache, mentioned how ingesting alcohol can turn “the nicest men into ***holes.”

“After two beers, it seems like all they want to do if fight,” the customer said.

Seconds after the two men left, a blonde woman named Amy, who had just finished her shift, sat down with her friend and ordered two glasses of Red Riser IPA.

Langford and his friend had finished their food before ordering a Black and Tan Brownie. Marie went to the back kitchen, where she warmed a brownie for 50 seconds. Once the brownies were finished, the bartender took a scoop before struggling to get a glob of Tillamook Vanilla Bean Ice cream out of the cartoon and onto the plate.

“The freezer is about -10 degrees, so it’s really hard to scoop out,” Marie said.

Marie brought out the two plates for the customers. The scent of warm chocolate fills the air as both plates featured a scoop of ice cream sits on top of a brownie, topped with hot caramel drizzle.

Langford is the first to dig in with his plate. After finishing the glob of ice cream, he sits back and sighs.

“It’s too sweet, I don’t think I’ll be able to finish this,” Langford said.

As Marie walked over to take the plates away, Langford, exposing the image of the orange blade on his arm, complemented Marie on her ink.

After she thanked him, Marie mentioned the tattoo of scripture on her side, relating to the rapper Sean Daley, known to fans by the name Slug. She then described the symbol that was embedded on her spine.

“It’s a symbol of darkness and death,” Marie said. “It kind of creeps people out, but it isn’t all dark. It also means rebirth and regeneration.”


About Al Stover

I graduated from Eastern Washington University with a bachelor's degree in journalism. I currently work as a Staff Reporter for the Cheney Free Press. I have interviewed characters like cage fighters, drag queens and dungeon masters. I like Batman, coffee, MMA and beer.

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